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How does Donald Trump’s indictment affect his chances of running for president?

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Donald Trump has become the first U.S. President to be criminally charged

Former U.S. President Donald Trump has been indicted by a Manhattan grand jury after a probe into hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels.

The adult film star maintains she had an affair with the former president, and was paid to keep it quiet. She said the sexual encounter occurred in 2006, a year after Trump married his current wife Melania, and over a decade before he ran for President of the United States.

While the payment was legal, it was allegedly recorded as a business expense, which is illegal in New York.

Daniels said the two had consensual sex.

Michael Cohen was Trump’s lawyer at the time, who made the $130,000 payment to Daniels in 2016, several days before the U.S. presidential election. He said he would “take a bullet” for Trump.

Two years later, he pleaded guilty to nine federal crimes including tax fraud, lying to Congress and campaign finance violations.

Cohen told CNN he was surprised about the timing of the indictment but “this is a long time coming.”

It means the former president will likely be arrested in the coming days. He will then enter a Manhattan courthouse, where he will be fingerprinted and have his mug shot taken.

“This evening we contacted Mr Trump’s attorney to coordinate his surrender to the Manhattan DA’s office for arraignment on a Supreme Court indictment, which remains under seal. Guidance will be provided when the arraignment date is selected.”

Alvin Bragg, MANHATTAN DISTRICT ATTORNEY

Alvin Bragg is the Manhattan District Attorney, who helped to sue the Trump Administration more than 100 times during its four-year term.

Trump has previously described the indictment as an attempt to “weaponise” the U.S. justice system.

In a statement, Trump’s lawyer said “he did not commit any crime”.

“We will vigorously fight this political prosecution in court,” the statement read.

What happens now?

The U.S. is fast approaching a presidential election, and Trump has signalled he will run for office again.

Many Republicans have swiftly defended Trump since the indictment came to light. This includes Nikki Haley, who is a current 2024 presidential candidate herself.

“This is more about revenge than it is about justice,” she tweeted.

Calvin Dark is a global affairs commentator in Washington, who said the reaction will be mixed among senior republicans.

“When it comes to Nikki Haley or former vice-president Mike Pence, they’re going to be an interesting situation.

“They’re going to want to use this to their political advantage to provide an alternative to many who might not want to nominate an indicted former president,” he said.

However, a criminal conviction would not prevent Trump from moving forward with his presidential campaign.

U.S. law does not stop criminals from running and serving as president—even if it’s from a prison cell.

“I think Ron DeSantis is going to play it pretty quiet. You might see a snide comment here and there. If you’re opponent is digging a hole, tell them to keep digging,” Dark said.

What does it mean?

Many U.S. conservatives believe the former president is being held to a different standard of justice.

Meanwhile, Democrats have viewed this through the lens of holding people in power to account.

“We are in unchartered legal and political territory,” said Bruce Wolpe from the U.S. Studies Centre.

“Trump has been telling his base that he’s done nothing wrong, and that he’s been persecuted politically.”

BRUCE WOLPE, U.S. STUDIES CENTRE

“His base is all in. This will not change Republican voter sentiment towards Trump as a political candidate for the presidency,” Wolpe said.

Trump is facing a string of other probes, including his efforts to undo the results of the 2020 presidential election, and whether he illegally interfered in Georgia.

Costa is a news producer at ticker NEWS. He has previously worked as a regional journalist at the Southern Highlands Express newspaper. He also has several years' experience in the fire and emergency services sector, where he has worked with researchers, policymakers and local communities. He has also worked at the Seven Network during their Olympic Games coverage and in the ABC Melbourne newsroom. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts (Professional), with expertise in journalism, politics and international relations. His other interests include colonial legacies in the Pacific, counter-terrorism, aviation and travel.

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Eisman identifies infrastructure as key investment opportunity

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Famed investor Steve Eisman, has shifted his focus to infrastructure, citing three main reasons.

 

The pandemic-induced shift towards onshore investment, the rise of AI necessitating data centre expansion, and the global push towards greener energy.

Eisman believes these trends offer a decade-long opportunity for investors, with Australia presenting ample opportunities for market participation.

Notable companies to consider for exposure include BlueScope and James Hardie Industries for building materials, Macquarie Technology and Goodman Group for data centres, and Worley, AGL Energy, and Origin Energy for electricity grid upgrades and green infrastructure.

However, Eisman cautions investors to approach utility investments carefully, considering their capital expenditure budgets in renewable energy and grid upgrades.

 

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Civil War cinema brings in the box office dollars

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Alex Garland’s film “Civil War” has made a significant impact at the box office, surpassing expectations with a $25.7 million opening weekend in North America.

Starring Kirsten Dunst, Wagner Moura, and Cailee Spaeny, the film explores a near-future scenario where California and Texas unite against a president’s authoritarian regime. Despite fictional elements, “Civil War” has sparked widespread discussion, with its themes resonating in today’s political climate. The film’s performance, coupled with positive reviews, suggests a promising trajectory in the coming weeks, bolstered by a relatively quiet release schedule.

You can catch the trailer here

 

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Oil likely to see hike following Iran’s Israel attack

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Global oil markets are poised for potential disruption as tensions escalate in the Middle East following Iran’s recent attack on Israel.

The attack, which targeted key infrastructure, has raised concerns about the stability of oil supplies in the region.

Experts predict that the incident could lead to a spike in oil prices as investors react to the heightened geopolitical risk. #ticker today #featured

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